SEPTEMBER 10, 2023, was the date set for the return of the BJJ Stars promotion to jiu-jitsu’s professional circuit. The most famous grappling promotion in Brazil brought forth another Grand Prix gi tournament, this time in the female division, which featured some of the top Brazilian athletes in the sport to challenge for the title and the beefy 100,000 Brazilian Reals that came with it.
The Grand Prix
The tournament was largely dominated by the favorite and #1 female athlete in the world, Gabrieli Pessanha who cruised through the division with relative ease, proving once again why she is arguably the best female jiu-jitsu athlete to have ever competed in our sport.
The GP also marked the return of two big stars of the sport whom we hadn’t seen on the mats in a while, namely Yara Soares & Tayane Porfirio. Tayane had a dominant performance in the first round and lost in the semi-finals to Soares by a technicality of the ruleset (more on that below) despite looking like the more aggressive grappler on the mats on this occasion. We certainly hope this event has fired up the former IBJJF World Champion to return to the competitive circuit on a regular basis as she is one of the most fun competitors to watch in the division.
The superfights were where the most entertaining matches took place. Special props to the veterans’ clash between Piter Frank and Caio Almeida who looked spectacular out there last night. A fired-up Isaque Bahiense looked phenomenal against Matheus Spirandeli, putting more wood in the heated relationship between himself and Spirandeli’s coach, Michael Langhi. During a rowdy post-match interview with the BJJ Stars presenter, Bahiense said:
“First of all thank you to Spirandeli, he has nothing to do with this war, but Langhi spoke a lot of sh** on the internet and that was good for me. it lit me up. He said I am old and done, I am 27 years old. In my mind, I think he [Langhi] always tried to throw shade and that is why I had to leave Alliance, It’s the old saying ‘People want to see you do well, but not better than themselves’. I had been in my comfort zone for a long time, I had to put many things on the side to coach, but this was what I needed to come back“. He also implied that he will be back to competing regularly on the tournament scene from now on.
Arguably the most important super fight match of the evening was the rematch of this year’s IBJJF Pan American Championship 88-kg finals between Jansen Gomes & Gustavo Batista. During the broadcast, commentator Victor Doria told the inside story of how Jansen was badly injured in the semi-finals and almost didn’t compete in the final. Gomes had the chance to be healthy this time around to avenge his loss to the Atos HQ athlete and indeed he did. A flawless performance by Checkmat’s “Nenego”, as he took the driver’s seat for nearly all of the match, taking Batista down and forcing him to play defense for the whole match. Once the match was finished, Jansen Gomes was announced as the challenger to Mica Galvao‘s BJJ Stars middleweight title, a very fun match to make in this division.
BJJ STARS SUPERFIGHT MATCH RESULTS
– Piter Frank def. Caio Almeida via flying armbar
WOMEN’S GRAND PRIX RESULTS
– Gabrieli Pessanha def. Carina Santi via 10×0 pts
– Tayane Porfirio def. Welma Moreira via 9×0 pts
– Melissa Cueto def. Tamiris Silva via armbar
– Yara Soares def. Mica Lima via 2×2 pts, 2×1 adv
– Gabrieli Pessanha def. Melissa Cueto via 2×0
– Yara Soares def. Tayane Porfirio via guard pull rule (in case of 0x0 result, the person who first pulled guard will lose)